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					ORIENTATION MANUAL

University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

Office of International Education

T ABLE OF CONTENTS
Page

FORWARD ...................................................................................................................... i UW-L Academic Policies and Procedures ...................................................................... 1 INS 250 Orientation Abroad ........................................................................................ 1 Registration at UW-L While Abroad ............................................................................ 1 Academic Plan ............................................................................................................ 1 Registration at your Host Institution ............................................................................ 2 Registration for your Return to UW-L.......................................................................... 2 Transcripts and Credit ................................................................................................. 3 International Internships .............................................................................................. 4 International Undergraduate Research Grant ............................................................. 4 Graduation Filing ......................................................................................................... 4 UW-L Financial Policies and Procedures ....................................................................... 5 $100 Registration Advance Deposit............................................................................ 5 Program Fees ............................................................................................................. 5 Projected Expenses Not Included in Your Program Fees........................................... 5 Payment Schedule ...................................................................................................... 5 Non UW-L Students .................................................................................................... 6 Refund Policy .............................................................................................................. 7 Financial Aid................................................................................................................ 7 How to Apply for Financial Aid .................................................................................... 7 Calculation of Awards ................................................................................................. 8 UW-L Authorization to Mail Financial Aid .................................................................... 8 Financial Aid for Students from other Universities Participating in a UW-L Study Abroad Program.......................................................................................................... 8 Types of Awards ......................................................................................................... 9 Disbursement of Financial Aid .................................................................................... 9 Appeal for Financial Aid Reinstatement .................................................................... 10 Finances While Abroad ................................................................................................ 11 Converting Money ..................................................................................................... 11 How Much Money Should I Bring?............................................................................ 11 Credit and Debit Cards ............................................................................................. 11 Traveler’s Checks ..................................................................................................... 12 Fiscal Security ........................................................................................................... 13 Power of Attorney ..................................................................................................... 13 Tax Returns .............................................................................................................. 13 How to Construct a Budget ....................................................................................... 14 Sending Money from Home ...................................................................................... 15 Working Abroad ........................................................................................................ 15

Health Issues While Abroad ......................................................................................... 17 Basic Health Maintenance ........................................................................................ 17 UW-L Student Health Center Travel Consultation .................................................... 17 Health Insurance ....................................................................................................... 17 International Student Identity Card............................................................................ 18 Health Records ......................................................................................................... 19 Immunizations ........................................................................................................... 19 Prescription Drugs .................................................................................................... 19 Glasses and Contact Lenses .................................................................................... 20 HIV and AIDS............................................................................................................ 20 Alcohol and Drugs..................................................................................................... 21 Food, Water and Traveler’s Diarrhea ........................................................................ 21 Safety While Abroad ..................................................................................................... 23 Consular Information Sheets and Travel Warnings .................................................. 23 Embassy Registration ............................................................................................... 23 Emergencies Abroad ................................................................................................ 24 Protection against Terrorism ..................................................................................... 25 Laws of the Host Country.......................................................................................... 26 Illegal Drugs Abroad ................................................................................................. 26 Alcohol Abroad .......................................................................................................... 28 Securing Your Valuables .......................................................................................... 29 Safety Tips When Traveling ...................................................................................... 29 Safety Out on the Town ............................................................................................ 30 Safety Issues for Women .......................................................................................... 30 Climate, Weather, and Natural Hazards ................................................................... 31 Practical Stuff................................................................................................................ 32 Passport .................................................................................................................... 32 Visas ......................................................................................................................... 32 Flight Arrangements .................................................................................................. 33 Travel Insurance ....................................................................................................... 33 Checking in at the Airport .......................................................................................... 33 Luggage .................................................................................................................... 33 Immigration and Customs ......................................................................................... 34 Travel on Your Own .................................................................................................. 34 Communication from Abroad .................................................................................... 34 E-Mail ........................................................................................................................ 35 Phone Cards, Internet and Postage Stamps ............................................................ 35 Electrical Adaptors .................................................................................................... 36 Absentee Ballots ....................................................................................................... 36 Housing On-Campus ................................................................................................ 36 Student Code of Conduct.......................................................................................... 36 FERPA Act ................................................................................................................ 37

Exploring Cultural Differences ...................................................................................... 38 What Culture Means ................................................................................................. 38 Questions that Reveal Cultural Patterns ................................................................... 38 Activities to Stimulate Cultural Learning.................................................................... 38 Perceptions from Abroad .......................................................................................... 39 Are You an Ugly American?...................................................................................... 39 Racial Issues Abroad ................................................................................................ 40 Disability Issues Abroad ............................................................................................ 40 Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Issues Abroad ........................................ 40 Culture Shock: Factors Important to Successful Intercultural Adjustments .............. 41 Re-Entry Shock ......................................................................................................... 42 Appendix I: Packing Checklist ...................................................................................... 44 Appendix II: Travel Resources...................................................................................... 46 Appendix III: Emergency Contacts ............................................................................... 47

FORWARD
"The world is so empty if one thinks only of mountains, rivers and cities; but to know someone here and there who thinks and feels with us, and though distant, is close to us in spirit—this makes the earth for us an inhabited garden." —Johann von Goethe Welcome to the world of study abroad! Your participation in an international study program reflects your commitment to continued learning. The lessons you will experience—not only in the classroom—will have a significant impact that will be reflected in your written and oral communications, interpersonal relationships, as well as your personal development. I promise, what you learn in your travels you will never pick up from reading a textbook. I encourage you to take advantage of the opportunity of your time abroad. The things that you will see, the places you will go, and the people you will meet will have a tremendous impact on your life. The world is growing smaller every day and now is the chance for you to globalize yourself. I have traveled to Europe, the Middle East and Asia, gaining an appreciation of the many diverse cultures encountered. The friendships and memories made during those travels continue to this day. As your program date draws closer, your level of excitement and anticipation will increase while the list of things to do grows longer. You are not alone. Your peers are experiencing the same heightened anticipation and are beginning to ask a lot of questions. There are a number of things that you can do to ease the transition from your life in the U.S. to your new life abroad. The earlier you can address your obligatory preparations, the more time you will have for your personal agenda. The information provided in this handbook will answer many of the questions you may have. Read it over carefully prior to departure and take it with you to answer questions during your travels. Each year the number of students participating in study abroad and exchange programs has increased. Great news! But, this means there is less time for the Office of International Education to answer individual questions. The information provided in this orientation booklet should answer most of your questions.

SANDY SIEBER STUDY ABROAD COORDINATOR
Throughout this Orientation Handbook the abbreviation OIE will be used to refer to the Office of International Education.

i

UW-L ACADEMIC POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
INS 250 Orientation Abroad All students participating in a UW -La Crosse study abroad program are required to complete the one-credit orientation course, International Studies INS 250: Orientation to Study Abroad. Failure to take this course, and pass with a C or better, may jeopardize your acceptance. The course will prepare you for your study abroad program by increasing your cultural awareness, cross-cultural sensitivity, and ability to adapt to a new culture. Students who have participated in study abroad programs will meet with you to talk about program specifics. Those students enrolled in a semester program taught in English will be placed in Section 001 and those students enrolled in a semester program taught in a language other than English will be enrolled in Section 002. Both sections are offered during the week in the evenings beginning the second half of each semester. Section 003 is an intensive weekend workshop for program participants from colleges and universities outside the La Crosse area. Students enrolled in summer programs must attend the Saturday afternoon orientation session. Exact dates and details are listed in the UW-L Timetable and in your acceptance packets. You do not need to register for INS 250. You will automatically be registered Registration at UW-L While Abroad During your term(s) abroad, you will be registered at UW-La Crosse in INS 300: Foreign Study for 15 credits. You do not need to go through the registration process yourself; this will be handled automatically for all participants. ALL students are required to pay the $100 Advance Registration Deposit directly to the Cashier’s Office for your semester abroad in addition to the $250 Confirmation Deposit paid to OIE. Refer to UW-L Financial Policies and Procedures. If you are doing an internship or independent study course that is supervised by a UW -La Crosse faculty member while abroad, you must arrange for this before departure. A Credit Approval Form for internships should be completed and on file with the Office of International Education prior to departure. Registration for independent study courses is the responsibility of the student and should be arranged with the supervising UW-L faculty member using a course override form provided by the department. Academic Plan The Academic Plan authorizes transfer credit for your study abroad program from the corresponding department at home. Consult catalogs, web sites, and other sources available from the Office of International Education to create a proposed list of courses. It is your responsibility to

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provide course descriptions for review by appropriate department chairs. The department chair may reserve the right to review syllabi; coursework completed, or test for competency, as noted in the Comments section before final approval is granted. Consult with your academic advisor regarding the appropriateness of courses, prerequisites needed, and progress toward degree completion. Each course must be assigned a transfer equivalent by the individual department chairs and initialed in the right margin. For example: If you wish to earn History credit for a course taken in Seville, Spain, you must see the History Department chair. Courses may be given an exact course number or be assigned upper- or lower-level elective credit in the department. The chair must initial whether elective courses will count toward major, minor, or general education requirements. All Business courses should be taken to Amelia Dittman, College of Business Administration, for review. All students majoring in International Business MUST obtain prior approval for credit for study abroad from the International Business Advisory Committee and should consult their advisor or Amelia Dittman in the Dean's office for details. It is recommended that Business students submit the appropriate application during the advising period in the semester before the start of their study abroad. Language students at UW -L MUST meet with a Modern Languages professor in the Modern Languages

Department, 315 Graff Main Hall, for program and course approval. When you have completed the Academic Plan you should make a copy for yourself and submit the original to the Office of International Education prior to departure. Note to API, AustraLearn, CEA, CIEE, ESCAPE, ISEP, Pacific Challenge, UW-Eau Claire and UWPlatteville Program Participants: These programs have programspecific course selection forms which you should submit directly to your provider, observing their deadlines. You should receive a course listing directly from your provider. This is in addition to the Academic Plan required by UW-L. Note to Non UW-L Students: You should meet with your advisor or study abroad office on your home campus to determine the procedures for transferring credit from UW -L. The UW-L Academic Plan should still be submitted with home campus equivalents in order to guide UW -L in the assignment of credit from the study abroad institution. Registration at your Host Institution Registration procedures for each program varies; you will receive program-specific information during the orientation process. Registration for your Return to UW-L Prior to departure for your study abroad program, you must meet with your academic advisor to determine the courses you should take the

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semester of your return. Just as no student on campus can be guaranteed a particular class, students participating in a study abroad program cannot be given this guarantee. You are responsible for registering yourself using TALON. The Timetable and Undergraduate Catalog may be found on the Internet: http://www.uwlax.edu Select Timetable from bottom of home page Please note:  Your current semester’s tuition must be paid in full before you can register. You are required to pay the $100 registration deposit for the semester of return to UW -L. Make check payable to UW -L; include your student ID number on the front of the check; write the next semester’s term in the memo area. Send your payment to the UW -L Cashier’s Office (1725 State Street, La Crosse, WI 54601). If courses taken abroad are required to fulfill a prerequisite for your return semester, you must complete a course override form prior to your departure.

If you haven’t already done so, you must complete the special non-degree student application found at http://apps22.uwex.edu/pls/ea/Apply.S pecial?src=APPLY&uw=LAC Transcripts and Credit As a general rule, UW -L demonstrates its support of international study through its recognition of credit for courses completed abroad on approved programs. However, in certain disciplines which are constrained by accreditation or certification requirements (such as business administration or teacher training), the transfer of credit and the acceptance of equivalent coursework may be impeded. Grades earned abroad will not be figured into your cumulative GPA; (except for UW-L faculty led programs) however, the grades and number of credits earned will appear on your transcript. A copy of your UW -L transcript will be sent to you when the transfer evaluation has been completed. You will be unable to view your grades on the TALON system. Please be aware that the partner institution may not issue official transcripts for weeks or months following completion of the program. You are responsible for providing OIE with department approval for any courses taken abroad and not previously approved on your Academic Plan.

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Non UW-L Students Be sure to check with your home institution for registration and reentry procedures prior to departure.

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International Internships An internship is a great way to be fully immersed in the culture while also getting experience for your future career goals. You may earn credit toward your major or INS 450: International Internship. Contact the Office of International Education for more details and application procedures. Open to UW-La Crosse students only. International Undergraduate Research Grant Funding is available for students who wish to complete a research project in conjunction with, or following, their study abroad program. These funds, however, may not be applied to your study abroad program fees. For more information refer to the Undergraduate Research Grant website: http://www.uwlax.edu/urc Open to UW-La Crosse students only. Graduation Filing

 TO DO
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Meet with your advisor to plan your schedule while abroad and for when you return Write down your advisor’s e-mail address: ___________________________________

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If you plan to graduate from UW -L at the completion of the semester abroad, you must file an intent to graduate form with the Registrar's Office. Also, notify OIE so that we can expedite your credit transfer.

Complete the Academic Plan Complete the Special Non-Degree Student Application Form (non-UWL students only) File an Intent to Graduate form if studying abroad your final semester ___________________________________ ___________________________________ ___________________________________

    

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UW-L FINANCIAL POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
$100 Registration Advance Deposit Do you have to pay the $100 Registration Advance Deposit to be registered for your semester abroad? YES!!! If you have not guessed it, OIE receives the above question quite frequently. For those students who do not currently attend UW -L, the $100 Advance Registration Deposit is required by University Administration and Finance for all students in order to register for the following semester. Because you will be registered at UW L for INS 300: Foreign Study, you must pay the $100 Advance Registration Deposit (and any outstanding balances) directly to the Cashier’s Office in addition to the $250 Confirmation Deposit paid to OIE. Program Fees A list of program fees for all study abroad programs is available in OIE. More detailed Fee and Billing Information will be given to you at Saturday’s orientation session. Please read and understand the information carefully. If you have any questions it is your responsibility to talk to the Study Abroad Coordinator prior to your departure. The top section of the fee statement, Program Fee, is what you are required to remit to UW-L. The bottom section, Estimated Miscellaneous Costs, includes suggested amounts to aid in budget planning. The program fee is based on the current exchange rate and estimated tuition increase, and is, therefore, subject to change. You should expect to pay the amount indicated, Balance Due, to UW -L, unless otherwise notified. All subsequent billing information will come from the Cashier’s Office. Your tuition bill must be paid in full before you may register for the semester of your return, including the $100 Advance Registration Deposit for the semester of your return. Projected Expenses Not Included in Your Program Fees Reasonable expenses that you should anticipate, in addition to your program fee, may include: Food Passport fees Visa fees Textbooks and supplies Housing and meals during breaks Laundry Independent travel Discretionary personal expenses Check with your program for particulars to be sure! Payment Schedule Students should make arrangements with a support person at home to handle personal finances. Fees will be posted to the student’s UW -L account and may be viewed on-line. All payments should be made payable to UW-La Crosse, include the student’s ID number, and be sent directly to the Cashier’s Office, 121 Graff Main Hall

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or paid online using a checking account, Visa or MasterCard.

financial aid is applied correctly to your account during your term abroad. Students should make arrangements with a support person at home to handle personal finances since the billing date may occur after departure to your program site. A bill for program fees will be sent via e-mail to your UW-L student account. You can also view your bill online at www.uwlax.edu/cashiers. To ensure proper credit to your account, payments made by check must be made payable to UW -L, and include your Social Security or UW -L Student ID number on the face of the check. Send directly to the Cashier’s Office: Cashier Office University of Wisconsin-La Crosse 121 Graff Main Hall 1725 State Street La Crosse, WI 54601 Non UW-L Students You will be assigned a UW -L e-mail account where all billing information will be sent. Use the following procedure to access your UW -L account: Go to the UW-L homepage and click on Email Access. Your log-in name is the first 8 letters of your last name, dot, the first 4 letters of your first name. Your password is the last four digits of your UWL ID number + month and day of your birth (8 digits) + @UWL (case sensitive).

You can view your student bill and make payments using a checking account, Visa or MasterCard online: www.uwlax.edu/cashiers

Payment of foreign study fees follows regular UW-L payment schedules. The total semester cost of your program (less the $50 application deposit and the $250 confirmation deposit) will be posted to your UW -L account and will be identified as a comprehensive "foreign study program” fee (students on a full year program are billed separately for each semester). The remaining balance is then due following the dates published in the UW-L Timetable under “Fee and Billing Information.” If you are receiving financial aid, you may deduct the expected amount of your award from the balance due. However, you are responsible for any portion of your study abroad program fee that is not covered by your aid package. Read the directions below carefully to make sure that your

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EXAMPLE: E-mail Address: smith.john@students.uwlax.edu Password: 12345678@UWL For more information, refer to the ITS Support page: http://itssupport.uwlax.edu/solutions/m ainview.aspx?documentID=28311 Non UW-L students must sign an installment credit agreement in order to receive a bill from the Cashier’s Office and pay the program fee over the course of the semester while abroad. This form was included in your acceptance packet. Refund Policy If you are forced to withdraw prior to departure for documented medical reason, you will receive a refund of all payments made, less any program costs which have already been expended or committed from your account. If you are forced to withdraw prior to departure for any other reason you will forfeit the $250 Confirmation Deposit. You may also be assessed program costs which have already been expended or committed on your behalf. This may result in a limited refund or additional moneys due. If you choose to withdraw after arrival for any reason you will be assessed full program costs, unless withdrawal is for a documented medical reason.

Financial Aid Federal, state, and most institutional financial aid may be applied directly to the cost of your program as long as you are a degree-seeking student at UW-L. Students from other colleges or universities may be able to transfer aid through a consortium agreement (see below); however, it is your responsibility to make all arrangements for this. How to Apply for Financial Aid To be considered for financial aid you must complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) form. Even if you have not received financial aid in the past, you should consider applying for aid for your study abroad program. The form should be completed by you or your parents or guardian and sent to the federal processor. The FAFSA is available from the Financial Aid Office, 215 Graff Main Hall or online with the Department of Education: www.fafsa.ed.gov/ Once you have completed the FAFSA for the upcoming academic year, you do not need to submit a revised application if you decide to study abroad after it has been submitted. All UW-L students must also complete the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse Financial Aid Information Form available from the Financial Aid Office and submit signed copies of your and your parents or guardian’s (if a dependent) previous year’s Federal Income Tax forms to the UW -L Financial Aid Office. Item number 21

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asks you to indicate whether you will be studying abroad during the upcoming semester. Again, you do not need to submit a revised form if you decide to study abroad after it has been submitted. Calculation of Awards Upon acceptance to your study abroad program and availability of program fee information, the Study Abroad Coordinator will forward a Foreign Study Financial Aid Budget Sheet to the UW-L Financial Aid Office if you indicated on your application that you intend to apply for financial aid. You do not need to initiate this process; it will be handled automatically. The budget form will include the program fee and estimated costs for transportation, housing and meals if not included in the program fee, and personal expenses for visa fees, books, materials, etc. The Financial Aid Office will recalculate your need based on the figures provided on the budget form. If you have already received a financial aid proposal for the academic year, you will receive a revised award only if your award amounts have changed. Stafford Loans received in the summer or J-term will reduce your eligibility for loans in the subsequent semester. If you receive a Perkins or National Direct Student Loan (NDSL), you must sign your promissory note before departure. Contact the Cashier’s Office, 125 Graff Main Hall, to arrange this.

UW-L Authorization to Mail Financial Aid In order to release your financial aid to cover your program fee, you will be required to sign a "UW -L Authorization to Mail Financial Aid" form. This document authorizes the Cashier’s Office to send your loan check(s) to the person designated on the form who, upon receipt, must submit a personal check or money order to the UW-L Cashier’s Office for the balance of your program fees. If you have a loan processed by electronic deposit the loan will be applied directly to your program fees and a change check will be issued for any additional amount due to you. In order to apply financial aid to the study abroad program fees it is easiest if the student arranges for the loan to be processed electronically. Check with your lending institution. Financial aid checks or change checks will be sent to the person designated on the Authorization to Mail Financial Aid form. This form does not give access to the student’s bank account at home. It is strongly recommended that a support person at home have access to your bank account at home in order to pay credit card bills, deposit money which can be withdrawn abroad using an ATM card, etc. Check with your bank to make these arrangements. Financial Aid for Students from other Universities Participating in a UW-L Study Abroad Program Only students who are degree candidates at UW -La Crosse can receive financial aid from the UW -L Financial Aid Office. If you are a

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participant from another institution, you must ask your home campus’ financial aid office to transfer your aid to La Crosse for the term(s) of your program. A formal, signed document between the two financial aid offices, called a "consortium agreement,” must be completed. Procedures vary, so meet with your financial aid advisor at your home institution for more information on the steps to take. Types of Awards A need-based study abroad grant of up to $2,000 is available for students who are 1) Wisconsin residents, 2) degree-seeking students at a UW System institution, and 3) participating in a UW System sponsored study abroad program. If you have applied for financial aid you will be automatically considered for this award; there is no separate application. The Stafford Student Loans are federal aid that does not need to be paid back until six months after continuous enrollment at an institution of higher education ends or six months after enrolled less than halftime. The subsidized Stafford Loan is needbased and does not accrue interest until the beginning of the repayment period. The unsubsidized Stafford Loan is NOT need-based, however interest accrues immediately but repayment may be deferred until enrollment ends or if your enrollment is less than half time. Regardless of the cost of your study abroad programs there is a limit on how much you can borrow on the Stafford Student Loans:

Yearly Loan Limit: Freshmen (1-29 credits) $3,500 Sophomore (30-59 credits) $4,500 Junior (60+ credits) $5,500 Graduate $8,500 These yearly maximums may be less depending on the eligibility of other financial aid programs. Cumulative Loan Limit: Undergraduate Graduate

$23,000 $65,000

Alternative loan programs are also available such as the Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) and those through private lenders. Upon receipt of your financial aid proposal if you have any questions on alternative sources of aid you should schedule an appointment with Kent Ohlfs in the Financial Aid Office, 215 Graff Main Hall or the financial aid advisor at your home campus, if you are completing a consortium agreement between your university and UW-L. Work study allocations cannot be used for study abroad. Disbursement of Financial Aid By Federal law, financial aid cannot be disbursed prior to the first day of each term at UW-L regardless of the beginning date of your study abroad program. Grants will be applied to your balance automatically. If you will be receiving a Perkins Loan you must sign the promissory note in the UW -L Cashier’s Office prior to departure. Many banks now offer electronic transfer for student loans. If your bank still issues paper checks or you expect to receive a change check, you must

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file a UW-L Authorization to Mail Financial Aid form with the Cashier’s Office to indicate where the check should be sent in your absence. This form is available from the Cashier’s Office on online at www.uwlax.edu/cashiers/forms.htm. Be sure to activate your UW -L Tower OneCard and be sure that you have selected a refund preference. You can do this at: www.UWLTowerOne.com

telling you that financial aid cannot be processed. DO NOT PANIC! You MUST complete the Appeal Form and state on it that you studied abroad. Your aid will be processed upon receipt of the appeal form; however, you will be placed on financial aid probation until your study abroad credits have been transferred to your UW-L record. At that time you must again complete an appeal form to be removed from probation.

 TO DO
 
Complete the FAFSA form Pay the $100 Advance Registration Deposit and any outstanding balances to be registered in INS 300: Foreign Study Pay Program Fees in full by the due date Pay $100 Advance Registration if returning to UW-L the semester following your study abroad program. (UWL Students only) Activate your UW-L Tower OneCard and be sure that you have selected a refund preference. Submit the UW-L Authorization to Mail Financial Aid form to the Cashier’s Office

The UW-L Financial Aid Office recommends that you and a parent or other designate complete a legal power of attorney with a Notary Public concerning the processing of all of your financial aid. Appeal for Financial Aid Reinstatement Federal Law mandates that postsecondary institutions participating in Federal Title IV Student Financial Aid Programs, including educational loans, must monitor credits attempted and credits earned by a student to ensure that students are progressing toward a degree or certificate. This creates a problem for study abroad students for the academic year and spring semester because transcripts from abroad are often not processed until the beginning of the fall semester, “red-flagging” study abroad students. You will receive a letter from the financial aid office over the summer

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Non UW-L Students Only:

    

Arrange for a Consortium Agreement with your home university’s financial aid office Sign and return the Installment Credit Agreement _____________________________________ _____________________________________ _____________________________________

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FINANCES WHILE ABROAD
Converting Money American currency can be exchanged for foreign currency at most international airports prior to your departure; at the international airport after you arrive; and at most major banks and railroad stations abroad. The exchange rates and service fees at U.S. airports are invariably less favorable than at the international airport of your arrival. Try to avoid having to exchange currency at hotels, restaurants, or retail shops, because the exchange rate will generally be outrageous. Banks abroad afford you the fairest exchange rate available. You can expect to pay a commission (which varies from one country to another) every time you exchange currency. In some countries the commission is based on a percentage of the amount you exchange, while in others there is a flat fee regardless of the amount of the transaction. The flat fee rate makes it to your advantage to exchange larger amounts to avoid repeat visits to the bank window, although this necessarily means that you might be carrying more cash than advisable. You need to find a happy medium between carrying large amounts of cash and paying repeat bank commissions for exchange transactions. How Much Money Should I Bring? Students are advised to convert a small amount of money ($50-100) before departure. Unless you are in Chicago, Minneapolis or Madison, this may take a week or more to process through a local bank. You can exchange money at most major airports, with a less favorable exchange rate and higher commission, but it is nice to have some local cash on hand before you leave the airport, for buses, taxis, a cup of coffee or a snack when you first arrive and are adjusting to your new home. The remainder of your funds should be available by credit/debit cards or traveler’s checks. Credit and Debit Cards Credit cards make foreign currency transactions easy and are invaluable in a financial emergency. Take a credit

It is helpful to start getting a feel for the currency you will be living and interacting with during your time abroad. A great website for checking daily exchange rates is: www.oanda.com/convert /classic You can also print a Cheat sheet from this site that you can cut out and stick in your wallet.
www.oanda.com/convert/cheatsheet

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card along if you can, but USE IT WISELY; overspending is so easy to do, and fees and interest charges can be costly. Also, the loss or theft of a card abroad can be a huge inconvenience when you are traveling. Credit purchases and cash advances often offer the best available rates for exchange. They are widely honored and provide reliable financial security. In most places, a purchase of $8-10 is required. Visa and MasterCard are the most widely accepted credit cards and offers cash advances. BE CAREFUL when using cash advances on a credit card; there may be a cash advance fee and the interest rate is often higher than the APR on purchases. You are advised to register your credit cards with an agency that offers services (such as your bank) for easiest notification in the event your cards are lost or stolen. If you don’t use an agency, you should still keep a copy of your credit card with the telephone number of the provider in case your card is lost or stolen. ATM’s have become widely available overseas, especially in Western Europe. ATM’s allow you to withdraw money in the host country’s currency directly from a bank account back home using a PIN. The exchange rate at an ATM is normally more favorable than at a bank or currency exchange. Check with your bank about ATM availability and fees. You should also ask your bank about any daily withdrawal limits. The biggest disadvantage to using a debit card is that bank’s do not offer the same

security measures as credit card companies. If a credit card is stolen and misused, you are usually only responsible for the first $50-$100, depending on the credit card company’s policy. With a debit card, a thief can withdraw your entire account and your bank will not reimburse you. If you intend to use a debit card as your primary means of income abroad, consider asking a friend or family member to transfer money on a monthly basis from a separate account to the account accessible with your debit card. It is wise to notify your ATM and credit card companies of your plans to study abroad. Some companies may see your overseas purchases as red flags and freeze your account. Traveler’s Checks Traveler’s checks are a safe way to bring large sums of money with you on your trip abroad. However, many banks are now discouraging the use of traveler’s checks by imposing hefty commission charges, or refusing to cash them altogether. While they are still a viable alternative to cash, we do NOT recommend using this as your primary means or currency. Your ATM card will provide you with the greatest ease of use as well as the most appealing conversion rate. If you do decide to bring traveler’s checks, they are available in denominations of various currencies (e.g. American dollars, British Pound Sterling, Australian dollars, Japanese Yen, and Euro) and can be obtained at

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most banks. The major companies dealing in traveler’s checks are Citicorp (First National City Bank), American Express, Thomas Cook, Bank of America, and Visa. There is a fee per order plus shipping and handling charges for traveler’s check purchases. Buying traveler’s checks in small denominations means carrying a bulkier package of checks with you, but it also means that you have greater control over the amount of currency you receive each time you cash one or more of these checks. (NOTE: American Express offices do not impose service charges for cashing American Express traveler’s checks.) Fiscal Security  Do not carry large amounts of cash—carry traveler’s checks, credit cards and bankcards instead. Write down the serial numbers on your traveler’s checks and keep these in a secure location, not with your checks. Keep your passport and money safe in a money belt or small purse that can be worn underneath your clothing. Wearing a purse on the outside highlights where you keep your money and valuables; moreover, it can easily be cut or ripped from your shoulder. Many thieves will simply grab the bag and run, sometimes breaking arms in the process. If possible, don’t carry a handbag at all.

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Wrapping rubber bands around a wallet can make it difficult for a pickpocket to remove. Do not take valuable items on your trip. If you will be heartbroken to lose Grandma’s locket, leave it at home.

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Power of Attorney If your signature will be needed for any official or legal document during your absence you should make arrangements for “power of attorney” to be held by an appropriate person to act on your behalf. You can do this by writing out in detail the specific duties that the person you choose will execute. Take this to a Notary Public to make it an official document. Go to www.findanotary.com to find a Notary Public in your area. Tax Returns If you have earnings which require you to file federal and/or state income tax returns, you must remember that you may be out of the country between January 1st and April 15th. Persons temporarily living abroad may normally request an extension on the deadline for filing federal income tax. The extension is usually until June 15th. The best advice is to contact the American Consulate or Embassy in your host country for information on your tax obligations; they may have 1040 forms and may even be willing to help you with questions. You can file from abroad if you make arrangements with your parents to send you the necessary state and federal forms and other documentation.

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How to Construct a Budget Adapted from the studyabroad.com Handbook by Bill Hoffa, (1995-2001) www.studyabroad.com/handbook Educational Directories Unlimited, Inc., Chester, PA. The overall cost of living abroad can sometimes be higher, or lower, than at home. Because you are in an unfamiliar environment, with local costs stated in a currency you may not be able to translate immediately into dollars, it is easy to be misled. You may also be confronted with an almost endless array of entertainment possibilities and attractions. A go-slow approach to buying much makes sense. Try to live within a prudent budget, which will take care of all necessities and allow you to live on the means available to you for the duration of your stay. There is nothing more dismaying than to run out of funds overseas, with no easy or quick means of replenishment. The following suggestions may be helpful:   Make both weekly and daily budgets and stick to them. Learn the “value” of the money (i.e. in relation to the currency you know, the US$) wherever you are as quickly as possible. Be consistently alert for special student rates and discounts, wherever you go, and know what is available through the use of your International Student Identification Card (e.g. travel, accommodations, entrance fees, some entertainment, etc.).

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Take advantage of less expensive alternatives whenever possible. Cook for yourself (especially breakfasts) if possible, or use refectory or student cafeteria meals rather than restaurants—saving even moderately priced restaurants for special occasions. Plan your entertainment and recreation around the availability of free, inexpensive, and discounted events—on campus or in the surrounding community. Shop when possible in street markets or major chain supermarkets. Avoid specialty shops and convenience stores (which add a 20-30% mark-up). Put off making major purchases as long as you can, when you have learned the range of available selections and prices—or learned that you don’t really need that expensive item, after all. When you travel, stay in Youth or Student Hostels, or in modest bedand-breakfast accommodations, as opposed to hotels, which cater to tourists and business travelers and charge accordingly. Take care of your belongings and safeguard your traveler’s checks and cash. Losses from carelessness are difficult enough at any time. They are even more unhandy abroad and pickpocketing is universally common.

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Sending Money from Home If you run short of cash while abroad, money can be sent from home in a variety of ways:  The quickest way, although the most expensive, is by cable transfer from your American bank to a bank abroad. It is wise to investigate this before you leave. Your hometown bank may have to process cable transfers through an internationally recognized American bank, which will in turn have to deal with a comparable internationally recognized bank overseas. American Express money orders are relatively fast. Transactions must be initiated at an American Express office in the United States and completed at one of their branch offices abroad, either of which could prove inconvenient, depending on their location. American Express can cable money to one of their overseas offices, where it can be picked up, with appropriate identification. Since not all American Express offices can prepare money orders or cable money, it is wise to find this out in advance. It is also possible to obtain from an American bank a foreign currency draft drawn against a recognized bank in the foreign country (e.g. a check in Euros drawn against the Banco Hispano-Americano in Madrid for a student in Salamanca). This draft can then be sent to you (by registered or certified mail) for cashing abroad.

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Should you prefer receiving a bank draft in American currency, a cashier’s check drawn against a major American Bank (e.g. Chase Manhattan) could probably be drawn from your hometown bank and forwarded to you abroad (Use Registered or Certified mail). However this may prove to be a relatively slow way of obtaining the money you need, since you still have to wait for the foreign bank to confirm the check’s validity.

Needless to say, personal checks drawn against your local hometown bank will be virtually worthless because of the long amount of time it takes each bank to clear the check. Working Abroad In most countries, as in the U.S., holding a wage-earning job while you are on a student visa is considered illegal and can be grounds for expulsion. Your student visa authorizes only living and learning in the country, usually only for the period of your formal enrollment, plus perhaps some additional time for tourism. You are likely to be busy enough with your studies, and the other demands and pleasures of being in a new place, that you will not have time to do much else. If you wish to add a work experience to your time away, this must be done either before your program begins or after it ends, and can only be done legally if you have a Work Permit. Work Permits are simply not available for work in certain countries, and are very difficult to obtain in most others since employers are usually forced to

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demonstrate that a potential employee from another country has skills and experience which are not possessed by the citizens of that country. This is usually a very hard case to make. The United States has entered into agreements with a limited number of countries, which allow for the reciprocal exchange of students seeking short-term paid employment in each other’s country. The Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE) administers the best known of these arrangements. You must apply for the Work Permit before you depart from the U.S. It cannot be obtained overseas. The application process is non-competitive. Opportunities for three and, in some cases, six month Work Permits exist for any time of the year in Australia, Britain, Canada, France, Germany, and Ireland, and in the summer in Costa Rica, Jamaica and New Zealand.

 TO DO
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Convert $50-$100 to local currency Notify credit card companies Check with your bank about ATM access, availability, and fees Arrange for power of attorney Copy your credit/bank cards (front and back) in case they are lost or stolen ____________________________________ ____________________________________ ____________________________________

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HEALTH ISSUES WHILE ABROAD
Basic Health Maintenance Students should exercise reasonable care in their behavior and activities to ensure their personal welfare. If you have diabetes or other chronic disease, are allergic to penicillin or any other drug, or you have any physical condition that may require emergency care, carry some kind of identification tag, bracelet, or card with you at all times indicating the specific nature of the problem and providing instruction of what must be done or not done in case you are unable to communicate this information yourself. UW-L Student Health Center Travel Consultation A physical and dental check-up is highly recommended prior to departure; in some cases health statements are required to obtain a visa to enter your host country. At a minimum of eight weeks prior to your travel schedule yourself for a Travel Consultation Appointment. During your appointment the clinician will review your itinerary and your vaccination record to help you determine which immunizations you need for your particular travel plans. It is also an opportunity to obtain good advice about avoiding health risks and about staying healthy during your time abroad. Please fill out, print, and bring the Travel Health Form to your Travel Consultation Appointment. This information will be used to assess your health needs prior to your travel. Also bring your immunization card. Please note: You should schedule your Travel Consultation appointment a minimum of 8 weeks prior to your travel. http://www.uwlax.edu/StudentHealth/ http://www.uwlax.edu/StudentHealth/Tra vlingAbroad/travelHealthForm.htm This site also has great advice on how to deal with jet lag, what to pack in a first aid kit, and where to get more information on health issues in your host country. Health Insurance All study abroad participants are required to have health insurance coverage that covers medical expenses abroad. The University of Wisconsin System has selected a mandatory health insurance policy; the cost of the coverage has been included in your program fee. Although you may already have health insurance coverage through your parents or university, some group insurance policies are not valid outside the United States.

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information with your placement materials, which you are required to return, with payment (in most cases). Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI) Team Assist Plan—WorldNet Assistance In the U.S.: (800) 472-0906 International: (01-713)-267-2525 (collect) E-mail: customerservice3@aig.com Your Team Assist ID# is 577UWIS Note to Germany Participants: Germany requires medical health insurance coverage with no limitation clauses and one which includes a dental policy. The CISI insurance does not meet these requirements; therefore, participants in these programs are required to purchase a German insurance plan upon their arrival. Note to Australia Participants: As a condition of obtaining a student visa, all international students must have Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC). OSHC provides medical hospital coverage for international students while in Australia. La Trobe University has an agreement with Medibank Private, a government managed private health fund for the provision of OHSC. The cost is included in your program fee in addition to the UW System required policy. Note to Tel Aviv University Participants: Tel Aviv University requires the purchase of a health insurance policy with comparable coverage to the program selected by UW System. The cost will be billed by UW-L with your program fee. International Student Identity Card The International Student Identity Card (ISIC) provides a basic insurance package while abroad including a repatriation provision, emergency aid and limited coverage for hospital care. Although redundant coverage, this card will be purchased for you and is included in your program fee because of the travel discounts also available with it.

Policy Information, Claim Forms and ID: During Saturday’s orientation session, you will receive a description of the coverage and claim forms. Remember to take this documentation with you. You will also receive an identification card during the Saturday orientation. YOU MUST CARRY THIS CARD WITH YOU AT ALL TIMES. Please note the dates of coverage indicated on the identification card. If you will be traveling on your own before or after the coverage dates, you are advised to check with your current insurance provider for coverage and claims procedures. Note to API, AustraLearn, CEA, CIEE, Egypt, France, ISEP, UW-Eau Claire, UW-Platteville and Webster University Program Participants: Participants are waived from the CISI insurance because they require the purchase of a health insurance policy with comparable coverage to the program selected by UW System. The cost is NOT included in your program fee. You will receive enrollment

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On the back of the ISIC is an Emergency Health Line number that you can call collect from anywhere in the world (1-715-342-4104). Health Records You should take with you a complete personal medical history, including a record of all immunizations, major illnesses, allergies, blood type, the generic names of any prescription drugs, etc. Be sure to list any special information that will be useful to doctors if you get sick on the trip. If you can, translate the information into the language of your host country. You may also want to prepare a list of common ailments in your host country’s language to help you if you ever need to go to the doctor. Immunizations At the present time, no immunizations are required for entry or return from Australia, Western Europe, Mexico, and parts of Asia. Countries infected with yellow fever may require certification of yellow fever inoculation (Africa and parts of South America). Requirements may change depending on the prevailing health conditions. Consult the National Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website for country- or region-specific requirements and recommendations: www.cdc.gov or the U.S. Department of State summary of Foreign Entry Requirements: www.travel.state.gov. You should also consult with a healthcare provider at least eight weeks prior to departure.

Even though these vaccinations are not mandatory, all students should consider the following in consultation with your healthcare provider:      Tetanus and Diphtheria boosters Meningitis MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) immunity through vaccine or physician-diagnosed cases Hepatitis B Hepatitis A vaccine for travelers where virus is prevalent (most of Asia, Africa, parts of the Caribbean, Mexico, South and Central America and eastern, southeastern and parts of southern Europe). Polio booster for travel to regions not free of endemic polio viruses Smallpox (although considered by the World Health Organization to be wiped out, country-to-country regulations change frequently) The Centers for Disease Control provides information on countryspecific health concerns and required or suggested immunizations. www.cdc.gov

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Prescription Drugs If you need prescription medicines, you should bring enough to last your entire stay. Also take a copy of the prescription. Take all medicines,

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prescriptions and non-prescription, in their original and labeled containers. When traveling, always keep medications in your carry-on luggage. Laws governing prescription medicines vary by country. If you use a U.S prescription drug which you are taking to your host country, you should bring along the actual written prescription from your doctor. A doctor's letter of explanation about the purpose of the drug is advisable if there is any question about the acceptance of the drug in the host country, especially if the drug is considered habit-forming or a narcotic. Glasses and Contact Lenses You should bring the prescription for your contact lenses or glasses with you in the event that you lose or break them. An extra pair of glasses or lenses is also a good idea because replacement abroad may be very expensive. You should also bring a supply of wetting and cleaning solutions, because your favorite brand may not be available or may be very expensive. If you use an electrical disinfecting unit for soft contacts, you may want to switch to chemical, because even with a converter the unit may not function well on electrical current in other countries. HIV and AIDS Although HIV infection is still relatively low in some areas, it is present and increasing at a rapid rate in Africa, South America and Southeast Asia. HIV, the virus which causes AIDS, is transmitted primarily in the following ways: 1) blood to blood contact (i.e.

unsterilized needles, body piercing, tattoos, blood transfusions), 2) sexual fluid to blood contacts (i.e. semen and vaginal/cervical secretions), and 3) congenitally (from mother to fetus). When traveling abroad be aware that some countries may require HIV antibody tests to obtain a visa. Many countries, especially in Africa, South East Asia, and former Communist/East Block countries, may not have the resources to adequately screen donated blood for HIV and Hepatitis B or provide sterile needles. Personal decisions in sexual behavior should reflect awareness of these facts and dangers, so if you are sexually active ALWAYS USE A CONDOM. Both men and women should carry their own condoms. You may have trouble finding reliable brands of condoms abroad or the storing of such items may be questionable; some countries do not sell them at all. The use of certain lubricants and jellies may reduce a condom’s efficacy, and non-latex condoms do not halt the spread of HIV antibodies. Always use latex condoms and water-based lubricants/jellies containing spermicide. Abstinence is the safest alternative, but if you are sexually active and you feel uncomfortable asking your partner to use a condom, then you need to re-think your decision to be intimate. Here in the U.S., we may take for granted disposable equipment such as needles and syringes. Be advised that some foreign countries will reuse even disposable equipment. Avoid injections unless absolutely necessary or if required, make sure the needles or syringes come straight from a sealed package or have been sterilized with chemicals or by boiling for twenty minutes. Caution regarding instrument

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sterilization applies to all instruments used to pierce the skin, including those for tattooing, body or ear piercing, and dental work. The Center for Disease Control recommends that “Diabetics or other persons who require routine or frequent injections should carry a supply of syringes and needles sufficient to last their stay abroad.” If you are injured or ill while abroad, avoid or postpone any blood transfusion unless it is absolutely necessary. If you do need blood, try to ensure that screened blood is used. Contact the nearest American Embassy or Consulate for assistance. If you are HIV positive, living overseas may present greater health risks because of limited medical facilities that cannot monitor the progress of the infection or the exposure to unfamiliar germs or bacteria may endanger already compromised immune systems. Discuss concerns thoroughly with your healthcare provider. Alcohol and Drugs A lower drinking age and a more tolerant attitude toward alcohol consumption should not enable students to forget the serious consequences of misuse of this drug. Being under the influence of alcohol impairs judgment and increases your chances of being the victim of crime and sexual assault. Students are subject to all local laws dealing with drunkenness and drug use. The import, purchase, sale or use of illegal drugs is a criminal violation.

Food, Water and Traveler’s Diarrhea The bacteria and germs that live in one country can be very different from those of another region. Many people get sick when they travel because they do not have natural immunity to these germs that the locals have developed. In less developed regions, such as Africa, South and Central America, and parts of Eastern Europe, water and food preparation may not follow the same standard of sanitation as in the U.S. The best rule of thumb to follow in these areas is: Boil it, cook it, peel it, or forget it! If you are unsure of the quality of the water, drink bottled water. If you do develop traveler’s diarrhea, drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration, drink clear broth or eat salted crackers to compensate for the loss of salt, and avoid milk products. Consider bringing an over the counter anti-diarrhea medication with you such as Imodium D. If symptoms persist or you develop bloody stools, consult a medical professional.

 TO DO
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Schedule a medical and dental checkup at least 8 weeks prior to departure. Get a copy of health records and immunizations
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SAFETY WHILE ABROAD
Consular Information Sheets and Travel Warnings The U.S. Department of State monitors the political and safety climate of countries around the world, and provides an overview of conditions pertaining to travel in each country for U.S. citizens. This information is available on their website at: www.travel.state.gov Consular Information Sheets provide information for every country in the world including safety risks, entry requirements, and the location of U.S. Embassies and Consulates. You will be provided with the most current information available at the time of the Saturday orientation for your host country; however, you should also refer to the Consular Information Sheets for the countries you may visit during independent travel. Public Announcements are issued, as the need arises, to update Consular Information Sheets and highlight issues of concern or risk in a specific country. Travel Warnings are issued when travel to a particular country or region is deemed unsafe by the U.S. Department of State or when severe risks to American citizens abroad are perceived. The Department of State also publishes Background Notes on approximately 170 countries with information on each country’s culture, history, geography, economy, government, and current political situation; they often include a reading list, travel notes, and maps. A number of other publications of interest to students are available from their website or may be ordered from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20420, telephone (202) 512-1800.

You are responsible for reading and MONITORING the Consular Information Sheets, Public Announcements and Travel Warning before and during your term abroad. Internet: www.travel.state.gov Hotline for American Travelers: (202) 202-501-4444

Embassy Registration Why Register? Millions of Americans travel abroad every year and encounter no difficulties. However, U.S. embassies and consulates assist nearly 200,000 Americans each year who are victims of crime, accident, or illness, or whose family and friends need to contact them in an emergency. When an emergency happens, or if natural disaster, terrorism, or civil unrest

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strikes during your foreign travel, the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate can be your source of assistance and information. Registration at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate (in the country you are visiting) makes your presence and whereabouts known, in case it is necessary for a consular officer to contact you in an emergency. During a disaster overseas, American consular officers can assist in evacuation were that to become necessary. But they cannot assist you if they do not know where you are. Registration is particularly important for those who plan to stay in a country longer than one month, or who will travel to:  A country that is experiencing civil unrest, has an unstable political climate, or is undergoing a natural disaster, such as an earthquake or a hurricane. A country where there are no U.S. officials. In such cases, you should register at the U.S. embassy or consulate in an adjacent country, leave an itinerary with the Consular Section, ask about conditions in the country that you will visit and ask about the third country that may represent U.S. interests there.

If you would like to contact an embassy or consulate directly please refer to the following site: http://usembassy.state.gov/ If your family needs to reach you because of an emergency, they can pass a message to you through the Office of American Citizens Services at 202-647-5225. This office will contact the embassy or consulate in the country where you are traveling and pass a message from your family to you. Remember consular officers cannot cash checks, lend money or serve as your attorney. They can, however, if the need arises, assist you in obtaining emergency funds from your family, help you find an attorney, help you find medical assistance, and replace your lost or stolen passport. Emergencies Abroad In the event of an emergency, telephone numbers for contacts in the U.S., and your host country are provided in the back of this manual. You may always call the OIE Director or Study Abroad Coordinator collect in the event of an emergency. U.S. Embassies and Consulates are located in every country of the world with which the United States has diplomatic relations. The Bureau of Consular Affairs helps U.S. citizens during a crisis abroad, such as natural disasters, political upheavals, and acts of terrorism.

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Access the State Department’s website to register: http://www.travel.state.gov/travel/tips/r egistration/registration_1186.html

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The Bureau of Consular Affairs also provides emergency services to individual travelers, such as:     Replacing lost or stolen passports Locating doctors or clinics for emergency medical care Contacting friends or family at home for money transfers if you become destitute Visiting you in jail if you are arrested

psychological deterrents to would-be terrorists.  Schedule direct flights, if possible, and avoid stops in high-risk airports or areas. Consider other options for travel, such as trains.

Lost Passport?!

Protection against Terrorism From the U.S. Department of State, “A Safe Trip Abroad.” Terrorist acts are random and unpredictable, making it impossible to protect oneself absolutely. The first and best protection is to avoid travel to unsafe areas where there has been a persistent record of terrorist attacks or kidnappings. The vast majority of foreign states have good records of maintaining public order and protecting residents and visitors within their borders from terrorism. Most terrorist attacks are the result of long and careful planning. Just as a car thief will first be attracted to an unlocked car with the key in the ignition, terrorists are looking for defenseless, easily accessible targets that follow predictable patterns. The chances that a tourist, traveling with an unpublished program or itinerary, would be the victim of terrorism are slight. Nevertheless, the following pointers may help you avoid becoming a target of opportunity. These precautions may provide some degree of protection, and can serve as practical and

1. Report the loss or theft to the local police 2. Go to the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate 3. Bring with you  Copy of your original passport number, date and place of issue  2 passport photos  Copy of police report  Passport fee Forms and procedures can be found on the Bureau of Consular Affairs’ website: http://travel.state.gov/passport/l ost/lost_849.html  Be aware of what you discuss with strangers or what may be overheard by others. Try to minimize the time spent in the public area of an airport, which is a less protected area. Move quickly from the check-in counter to the secured areas. On arrival, leave the airport as soon as possible.

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

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As much as possible, avoid luggage tags, dress and behavior that may identify you as an American. Keep an eye out for suspicious abandoned packages or briefcases. Report them to airport security or other authorities and leave the area promptly. Avoid obvious terrorist targets such as places where Americans and Westerners are known to congregate.

arrests are on drug-related charges. Many of those arrested assumed as U.S. citizens that they could not be arrested. From Asia to Africa, Europe to South America, U.S. citizens are finding out the hard way that drug possession or trafficking equals jail in foreign countries. There is very little that anyone can do to help you if you are caught with drugs. It is your responsibility to know what the drug laws are in a foreign country before you go, because "I didn’t know it was illegal" will not get you out of jail. In recent years, there has been an increase in the number of women arrested abroad. The rise is a result of women who serve as drug couriers or "mules" in the belief they can make quick money and have a vacation without getting caught. Instead of a short vacation, they get a lengthy stay or life sentence in a foreign jail. A number of the Americans arrested abroad on drug charges in 1994 possessed marijuana. Many of these possessed one ounce or less of the substance. The risk of being put in jail for just one marijuana cigarette is not worth it. If you are purchasing prescription medications in quantities larger than that considered necessary for personal use, you could be arrested on suspicion of drug trafficking. Once you’re arrested, the American consular officer CANNOT get you out!

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Laws of the Host Country Foreign visitors are subject to all local and national laws of their host country. This applies to your host country and in any other country you may visit. Do not expect any special treatment or assistance if you violate the law. You can be arrested overseas for actions that may be either legal or considered minor infractions in the United States. Some of the offenses for which U.S. citizens have been arrested abroad are:     Drug Violations Possession of Firearms Photography Infractions (at border areas, military installations, and government buildings) Purchasing Antiques (if considered a national treasure; you may be required to prove purchases are reproductions or secure necessary export permits)

Illegal Drugs Abroad Each year, 2,500 Americans are arrested overseas. One third of the

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You may say "it couldn't happen to me" but the fact is that it could happen to you if you find yourself saying one of the following:   "I'm an American citizen and no foreign government can put me in their jail." "If I only buy or carry a small amount, it won’t be a problem."

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pay legal fees and/or fines with U.S. Government funds

If you are caught buying, selling, carrying or using drugs—from hashish to heroin, marijuana to mescaline, cocaine to Quaaludes, to designer drugs like ecstasy. IT COULD MEAN: Interrogation and Delays Before Trial—including mistreatment and solitary confinement for up to one year under very primitive conditions; Lengthy Trials—conducted in a foreign language, with delays and postponements; Weeks, Months or Life in Prison— some places include hard labor, heavy fines, and/or lashings, if found guilty; The Death Penalty—in a growing number of countries (e.g., Malaysia and Pakistan). Although drug laws vary from country to country, it is important to realize before you make the mistake of getting involved with drugs that foreign countries do not react lightly to drug offenders. In some countries, anyone who is caught with even a very small quantity for personal use may be tried and receive the same sentence as the large-scale trafficker. DON’T LET YOUR TRIP ABROAD BECOME A NIGHTMARE! This information has been provided to inform you before it is too late. SO THINK FIRST!

If you are arrested on a drug charge it is important that you know what your government CAN and CANNOT do for you. The U.S. Consular Officer CAN   visit you in jail after being notified of your arrest give you a list of local attorneys (The U.S. Government cannot assume responsibility for the professional ability or integrity of these individuals or recommend a particular attorney.) notify your family and/or friends and relay requests for money or other aid—but only with your authorization intercede with local authorities to make sure that your rights under local law are fully observed and that you are treated humanely, according to internationally accepted standards protest mistreatment or abuse to the appropriate authorities

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The U.S. Consular Officer CANNOT   demand your immediate release or get you out of jail or the country! represent you at trial or give legal counsel

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A number of countries, including the Bahamas, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Mexico and the Philippines, have enacted more stringent drug laws which impose mandatory jail sentences for individuals convicted of possessing even small amounts of marijuana or cocaine for personal use. Once you leave the United States, you are not covered by U.S. laws and constitutional rights. Bail is not granted in many countries when drugs are involved. The burden of proof in many countries is on the accused to prove his/her innocence. In some countries, evidence obtained illegally by local authorities may be admissible in court. Few countries offer drug offenders jury trials or even require the prisoner's presence at his/her trial. Many countries have mandatory prison sentences of seven years or life, without the possibility of parole for drug violations. REMEMBER! If someone offers you a free trip and some quick and easy money just for bringing back a suitcase...SAY NO! Don't carry a package for anyone, no matter how small it might seem. The police and customs officials have a right to search your luggage for drugs. If they find drugs in your

suitcase, you will suffer the consequences. You could go to jail for years and years with no possibility of parole, early release or transfer back to the U.S. Don't make a jail sentence part of your trip abroad. The Department of State's Bureau of Consular Affairs'' Office of Overseas Citizens Services provides emergency services pertaining to the protection of Americans arrested or detained abroad, the search for U.S. citizens overseas, the transmission of emergency messages to those citizens or their next of kin in the United States and other emergency and nonemergency services. Contact the Office of Overseas Citizens Services from Monday through Friday, 8:15 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. at (202) 647-5225. For an emergency after hours or on weekends and holidays, ask for the Overseas Citizens Services'' duty officer at (202) 647-4000. Internet home page: http://travel.state.gov If you don’t believe me, rent the movie, Brokedown Palace, or Midnight Express. Alcohol Abroad With many U.S. students abroad, there is a direct correlation between alcohol use and stupidity. The drinking age is lower in most other countries than in the United States. Many U.S. students who are not yet 21 before departure have a tendency to overindulge and abuse alcohol as a result of this new freedom. Attitudes toward alcohol

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consumption may be different in your host country, and often rules about the acceptability of alcohol use in certain situations or contexts are very different. So if you choose to use alcohol, use moderation and good sense. Alcohol use impairs judgment, which increases your chances of being a victim of crime or sexual assault. Women, especially, should be aware that a woman who is publicly drunk may be looked upon as “loose” or “unladylike” or inviting advances from men. Public displays of drunkenness also contribute to the stereotype of “The Ugly American.” Securing Your Valuables Passport Guard your passport, visa, and other documents carefully at all times. Before leaving, make a copy of the identification page of your passport. Keep this copy separate from your passport and carry it with you at all times. If local laws do not require you to keep your passport with you, carry only the photocopy of your passport when you are out and about. Cash, Traveler’s Checks, and Credit Cards Never carry large amounts of cash. For the small amounts of cash you need, use a money belt or pouch worn around your neck, underneath your clothes. Keep the receipts for traveler’s checks in a separate place from your checks. As you cash checks, make a notation on the receipt. Take only the credit cards with you that you will use on the trip. Keep a list of cards, numbers, and emergency replacement procedures in a secure, separate place.

Luggage Mark all luggage, inside and out, with your name, and include the address and telephone number of your destination inside. If you have an itinerary, put a copy inside each bag. Never leave your bags unattended, and do not ask a stranger to watch them if you need to move around an airport or train station. A travel lock can be used if it is TSA approved. These can make access to your bag a hindrance, but do not rely on them to keep a determined thief from getting into your bag. When claiming your luggage, check to be sure no one has tampered with it or put something in your bag that does not belong to you. Do NOT pack essential documents, valuables, or medicine in bags that will not be in your control at all times—put them in your carry-on bag. Airline Ticket Make a copy of your airline ticket or list your ticket numbers, all flights included, and keep in a separate place with the name, address, and telephone number of the issuing agency. Safety Tips When Traveling    Make sure someone else knows your itinerary. When you’re distracted, you’re an easy target for thieves. When you’re on the telephone or reading a sign or train schedule, do not forget to keep an eye on your bags. Remember: keep your eyes and hands on your bags at all times.

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Be especially alert in crowds. Train stations, crowded shopping areas and tourist spots—any place with a crowd is likely to be a place for thieves and muggers as well. Be careful to whom you give your luggage. Sometimes thieves pose as porters or taxi drivers. Do not leave your bags unattended. Plan your trip so that you do not arrive in an unknown town late at night without having made arrangements for spending the night. Whether you are in a home stay or dormitory setting, be sure to secure all valuables and keep them out of plain view. Lock your door and windows when you leave your dorm room for any length of time and when you go to bed. When traveling, always sleep with your money belt or neck safe hidden under your clothing. When you stay at a hotel, make use of the safety deposit boxes that many hotels have. Leave your passport and any money you don’t expect to need that day safely locked away. Check the locks and safety of room before you commit to it. Do not leave valuables in parked cars. Thieves particularly target rental cars and cars with out of town or foreign license plates.

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Guard your passport, visas and other documents carefully at all times. Do not leave them in the outer flaps of your bags. It is better to have to dig for them the few times you will need them, than to leave them out for anyone to steal.

Safety Out on the Town  Avoid forming large groups of Americans or other foreigners. Smaller groups attract less attention. At the same time, two are safer than one. Do NOT go with strangers if you are alone. Dress to blend in with the local citizenry. Find out which parts of town are considered risky by the locals. As in the United States, always stay in well-lit and well-traveled areas. Don’t take short cuts through alleys or unsafe areas. If you should fall victim to a crime, remember that the U.S. Embassy is there to help you. Every embassy and consulate has a duty officer on-call around the clock to assist in an emergency.

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Safety Issues for Women Language and cultural difference might mean what you consider appropriate behavior for a woman in the U.S., will be interpreted much differently by the men and women of your host country. Many people in some countries may have distorted or stereotyped notions about American

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women based on images acquired through American film and advertising. Gestures, clothing, or the way you carry yourself may have different interpretations in other cultures. Follow the example of women from your host country, in terms of culturally appropriate dress and demeanor. Always travel in groups of at least two, especially in unfamiliar or isolated areas and at night. The best way to keep yourself safe is to do your research. Seek out information from people who were born or raised in the country to which you are traveling. Talk to students who have previously studied abroad in your host country. Read books, magazines, and utilize on-line resources such as: Journeywoman (www.journeywoman.com): a great resource to research what to wear in your country of travel from women who have already traveled there. Smarter Traveler (www.smartertraveler.com): great tips for traveling alone and specifically for women traveling alone. HERmail (www.smartertravel.com): great tips for traveling alone and specifically for women traveling alone. Her Own Way (www.voyage.gc.ca/main/pubs/PDF/he r_own_way-en.pdf): Women’s Guide to Safe and Successful Travel from the Canadian Government downloadable PDF file. While abroad, a good rule of thumb is to ask yourself these questions:*

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What is appropriate to wear in public? When isn’t it appropriate to be alone? What are the traditional gender roles? How do I react to unwanted attention?

*These questions apply to all students, regardless of race, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, religion, ability, or socio-economic status. Climate, Weather, and Natural Hazards Even when you are in the safety of your home, natural disasters can strike. Earthquakes, hurricanes, tsunamis, are only some of the natural disasters threatening the safety of Americans abroad. When natural disasters occurs abroad the Department of State and U.S. embassies and consulates in the affected country stand ready around the clock to track and assist affected American citizens. Consult with the U. S. State Department’s website to learn more about how to prepare for natural disasters. http://www.travel.state.gov/travel/tips/e mergencies/emergencies_1207.html

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PRACTICAL STUFF
Passport YOU MUST APPLY FOR A PASSPORT IMMEDIATELY!!! All travelers between countries must have a passport, your official identification as a citizen of the United States issued by the Department of State. It is important to remember that your passport is your most important legal document while traveling overseas. YOU MUST SUBMIT A COPY OF YOUR PASSPORT TO OIE BEFORE YOU DEPART. It is a very good idea to make two copies of your passport (the page with your picture and personal data) in case your passport is ever lost. One copy should be carried separate from your passport and the other can be left with your parents or guardian or a friend. If you lose your passport, you will need to speak to the American Citizens Services unit of the Consular Section at the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. Visas A visa is official permission to visit a country and is granted by the government of that country. Visa formats vary, from a simple stamp imprinted on one of the pages in your passport at the time you enter the country, to an official document with your photograph attached. The requirements and application procedures also vary according to the country and the length of your stay. If your study abroad program requires a visa, you will receive information in your acceptance packet. Several countries now require applicants to hand deliver their visa documents in person at the Consulate office. Be sure to check with the appropriate Consulate for your program for their requirements and application timeline. For every program it is advised to check the Consular Information Sheet upon acceptance and check the site periodically. Entry requirements can change with little or no notice and you will be required to adhere to the most current posted information!

Important Passport Information Effective December 31, 2006, the U.S. Government’s Intelligence Reform Bill requires passports for all air and sea travel to or from Canada, Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean and Bermuda. This is in addition to all of the other destinations worldwide that already require a valid passport. For information on obtaining or renewing a passport, visit the State Department’s web site at: http://www.travel.state.gov/pass port/passport_1738.html

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CONSULT THE FOLLOWING WEBSITE FOR UP TO DATE VISA REQUIREMENTS www.travel.state.gov If you plan to do any travel beyond the country where your program takes place, you must check the visa requirements for all the countries you plan to visit by contacting the nearest consulate for that country or consulting the U.S. Department of State Consular Information Sheet for that country. Note to Non-U.S. Citizens: Visa procedures and immigration requirements are different for students holding passports from other countries or in the U.S. as permanent residents. Contact your on-campus advisor if you do not hold a United States passport. It is very important to initiate this process as soon as possible. U.S. permanent residents must also check with the U.S. Immigration Service concerning regulations for re-entry into the U.S. It is particularly important to verify procedures for those who contemplate being outside the U.S. for more than one year. Flight Arrangements You are responsible for arranging your own flight. You may go through a travel agent or buy tickets online, but you MUST submit a copy of your CONFIRMED flight itinerary to OIE in order to notify the host institution of your arrival. You may want to begin checking with STA travel to make flight arrangements. This is only one of many options for finding flights.

STA Travel 608-263-8810 or http://www.statravel.com/ Information on ground transportation from the airport of arrival to the host institution will be provided in your program-specific orientation materials. Travel Insurance The CISI Health Insurance policy required for all study abroad participants does not include coverage for lost baggage, trip cancellation or trip delay. You may want to look into a travel protection and baggage protection plan through your travel agent or STA Travel. http://www.statravel.com/ Checking in at the Airport You should plan to arrive at the airport 2-3 hours prior to your departure time for check-in and adequate time for security screening. You will be asked to present your passport and any required visas. Luggage Limits on luggage (weight, size, number of pieces) are established by each airline. Two modest-sized suitcases and a small carry-on bag should be adequate. A lightweight suitcase with a handle and wheels is advisable. A large backpack is very useful for travel and can be used as one piece of luggage. Don’t take your entire wardrobe and avoid heavy clothing items. Check with the airline on which you are flying to find out specific baggage allowances and weight or size restrictions. Don’t bring oversized suitcases as you will have difficulty with ground transportation upon

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arrival. Overweight charges can add up, so plan carefully. Immigration and Customs As you enter any country from another country via an international flight (or other means) you have to show your passport and any required visas and proof of immunizations. This usually occurs just after you have deplaned and entered the airport but before you have your luggage. Remember that admission to the country is entirely at the discretion of the immigration officer. It is wise to be polite and to dress neatly. The immigration officer, who determines the length of stay to be authorized and stamped into your passport, will normally ask you about the purpose of your visit and how long you plan to remain in the country. All of this can be unnerving at times, but it is nevertheless generally routine and always required. After your passport has been stamped, and you have collected your luggage, you must pass through a customs inspection. You will probably receive a customs declaration form to be filled out on your plane (or train). Customs officials will examine this when they look at your luggage. The customs declaration form requires your local address; so do not forget to carry it with you on the plane. Your bags may be very carefully examined, and you may be detained or asked to pay duties if there are any irregularities or violations of customs regulations. You may also be waved through with no special attention whatsoever.

Virtually all countries impose duties (import taxes) on items purchased abroad which exceed a certain value or are restricted in quantity permitted (e.g. tobacco). Items which you bring with you into the host country will be subject to these limitations. So-called “duty-free” stores are found in most international airports and on board international flights. Do not be confused by the name. Such stores allow you to purchase certain items (commonly liquor, tobacco, candy and perfume) without paying any country’s consumer tax. This often, though not always, means that you can buy these items for less than you would pay in either a typical U.S. or foreign store. Travel on Your Own Many students ask OIE for information on train passes, youth hostels, sites to see, etc. Sadly, the Study Abroad Coordinator is not a travel agent and cannot give you the best deals. Appendix II lists websites and books that you may find useful in planning your travels. Past study abroad participants are another great resource for the best travel deals. Communication from Abroad Just some tips:  Call your family/supports at home on a regular basis; lack of contact creates worries and then panicked calls to the Office of International Education. If you have a problem, especially if it’s an emergency, call or e-mail the Study Abroad Coordinator.

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Check the time difference before calling to avoid 2:00 a.m. telephone calls. http://www.timeserver.com

provided on the Study Abroad Application form. Phone Cards, Internet and Postage Stamps The best resource for finding out about phone cards and Internet availability are the program alumni you will meet during the Saturday orientation. Many students recommend the AT&T calling card that can be purchased from Sam’s Club. A different access number is needed in different countries, listed on the cardboard attached to the phone card upon purchase. Other students recommend waiting to buy calling cards until arriving in your host country because they may be cheaper. Check these websites for calling cards and rates for calling various countries: http://www.zscomm.com/ http://www.cloncom.com/ This database contains listings for verified cyber cafés, public Internet access points and kiosks in 168 countries, updated regularly: http://cybercaptive.com

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Read your e-mails before sending them to be sure they are appropriate. If angry or upset, write, take a walk, or have a cup of coffee, then edit. Before you leave, make a list of important phone numbers and email addresses, such as your advisor’s. Rediscover the lost art of letter writing—they are great keepsakes if your friends return them to you.

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E-Mail Communication via e-mail will be sent to you that may include program updates, announcements, and registration information from the Study Abroad Coordinator. You are responsible for checking your e-mail account on a regular basis. You can check your UW-L account through a web interface, which should eliminate the need for hotmail-type accounts. If you do use a hotmail account, you should create an alias that automatically forwards mail from your UW-L account to your active account. To access your student email account, go to http://www.uwlax.edu/owa/. Students from non-UW-L institutions will continue to receive e-mail messages to their e-mail account

Buy postage stamps when you arrive to your host country.

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Electrical Adaptors The United States and Canada provide electricity at 110 volts. With a few exceptions, the rest of the world provides electricity at 220 volts. Unless your appliance is built to operate in both of these ranges of voltages (“dual voltages”), it will be damaged if you plug it into foreign sockets without a converter. Socket shapes are also different around the world; for that, you will need adapter plugs, even with dual-voltage appliances. Converters and adapter sets are commonly found at most electronic stores but BEWARE— some appliances, such as hairdryers, have a tendency to “burn out” the less expensive kinds, causing damage to the appliance and sometimes shorting out a fuse in older electrical systems. Using converters with laptops can also be very risky, especially if it does not have a surge protector. Absentee Ballots For some students, the first opportunity to vote may coincide with their period abroad. Just because you are not in the U.S. at election time, does not mean you cannot cast your ballot. Before you may vote from abroad, however, you must be registered to vote at home. Check your local city or town hall to obtain information on procedures for voting by Absentee Ballot, including timing. If necessary, your Absentee Ballot can be notarized at a U.S. embassy or consulate. Want to vote on-line instead? Check out Youth Vote Overseas (YVO).

YVO brings you the online tools that will make your overseas voting experience easy and fast. Register to vote, look-up election official contacts, check filing deadlines and access help desk services. https://yvo.overseasvotefoundation.org/ overseas/home.htm Housing On-Campus If you intend to return to the residence halls, it is your responsibility to make arrangements with the Office of Residence Life for the necessary paperwork to be completed. OIE cannot be responsible and will not intervene if you miss the deadline for application. If you live off-campus and need a sub leaser during your time abroad, you may post your announcement on OIE’s bulletin board, outside the Study Abroad Office (223 Graff Main Hall). It is recommended that you post as early as you can in order to find a suitable sub leaser. OIE is not responsible for posting your announcement or finding a subleaser on your behalf. Student Code of Conduct Students are required to complete the UW System of Responsibility form that was included in their acceptance packet. This form is their consent to maintain a safe and secure environment to promote a positive learning environment and student learning. Failure to comply with this agreement may result in dismissal from their program and immediate return to the United States for disciplinary actions.

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FERPA Act Family Education and Privacy Act (FERPA) was issued by the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare issued in the June 17, 1976 Federal Register, the final regulations for implementing the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (P.L. 93-380, 513), as amended (P.L. 93-568, 2). The effective date of the Act was November 19, 1974. The amendment is popularly known as the "Buckley Amendment." The June 17, 1976 final regulations contain all regulatory provisions pertaining to FERPA and supersede the earlier publications of regulations, providing the public with a single document. ESSENCE OF THE ACT  Students upon reaching age 18 or attending postsecondary institutions must be permitted to inspect and review their own education records, to the exclusion of their parents. There are no rights guaranteed under the Act for parents of students attending a postsecondary institution.  Institutions may not disclose information about students nor permit inspection of their records without their permission unless such action is covered by certain exceptions as stipulated in the Act. Students or parents are unlikely to be successful if bringing suit to enforce provision of the Act. The only enforcement procedure provided by the Act is through

complaint to an Office in the Department of Health, Education and Welfare; and the only penalty is withdrawal of Office of Education funds from the Institution.  Institutions receiving no funds administered by the Office of Education have no obligation for compliance with Act.

For further details, please refer to the general University catalog, contact the Office of Records and Registration, or refer to www.uwlax.edu/Records/html/famedu.ht ml.

 TO DO
 Apply for a passport NOW!
Submit a copy to OIE

 Apply for visa, if required  Arrange for Absentee Ballots, if
necessary.

 Change your address on the UWL web

 Pack your luggage, walk around
the block, re-pack with less

 Finalize flight arrangements
when provided information from the Study Abroad Coordinator or travel agent

 Contact the Office of Residence
Life if you plan to live on-campus when you return

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 ______________________________  ______________________________

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EXPLORING CULTURAL DIFFERENCES
What Culture Means Each society collectively establishes patterns of thought and behavior which make up the culture of that society. We are generally not aware of the patterns of our own culture because we begin learning them from the moment of birth. Every day we automatically practice the unwritten rules that guide our behavior, our responses and our perspective on the world. Questions that Reveal Cultural Patterns If we want to examine the patterns of behavior and thought that define a culture, we may ask questions like the following:  What makes up a family? What are the roles/duties of individual members? How are male/female roles defined? What obligations does one have toward parents or toward brothers and sisters? What kinds of rituals and ceremonies are engaged in? What are the underlying principles or meanings of individual actions? Who does/does not participate? How is education viewed? Who is responsible for education, who participates, and how is “learning” defined? What is considered beautiful or valuable in the society? Why?     How is the “self” defined? How does one measure one’s success? What causes people to laugh/cry? When is it acceptable to tell a lie and to whom? How is one punished by society? Under what circumstances can one visit another person’s home? What sorts of questions are too personal to ask? What sort of people does one avoid? What sort of relationship does one establish with one’s neighbors?

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Activities to Stimulate Cultural Learning A productive way to learn about another culture is to become a keen observer. Any interaction or activity can provide opportunities for learning. You may want to try activities like the following:  A trip to the store: Observe the role of various staff; interaction between storekeeper and the customer; arrangement of displays; prices of specific items and how the prices are displayed; what customers buy; how items are packaged. A visit to the clinic: Observe the interaction between various staff members; treatment and involvement of the patient; management of time; use of drugs; arrangement of space; attitudes toward privacy. A visit with a host family: Observe the design of the house; how space is used and treated; what objects are
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displayed; roles of family members; manner of speech between family members; how food is served; treatment of a guest; gestures; topics of conversation.  A trip to a restaurant: Observe table manners; presentation of food; price of various foods (which are most expensive); manner of serving; use of dishes. A trip to a theater: Observe how a film is advertised; who attends; who laughs at what; timing of scenes; use of music; costs.

What is Anti-Americanism?  Consistent hostility toward the government, culture, or people of the United States Typically this idealism is associated with the United States’ foreign policy. Originating in the late 1700’s, AntiAmericanism gained momentum following the entry of the U.S. into World War I. Later, involvement in the Vietnam War and the ensuing Cold War perpetuated the image of America as a “bully” and further strengthened hostile feelings. The current state of world politics does little to help dispel this image, and it is important to understand that as a study abroad participant, you may be asked questions regarding your political views or possibly even be accused of being an “Ugly American.” What are the characteristics associated with an “Ugly American?”  Refers to perceptions worldwide of arrogant, demeaning, and unsophisticated behavior of Americans abroad  Loud, uncultured, insensitive, dresses absurd, throws money around, acts oblivious in public These are some of the common stereotypes associated with Americans worldwide. As an ambassador of the United States and UW -L, it is important to be cognizant of your actions and behavior while abroad. What you do is not only a reflection on yourself, but the university, the state, and the entire country. What can you do to dispel this image?   Be optimistic & open-minded Explore opportunities

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Perceptions from Abroad Students should be aware that political or natural events in their host country might be in the news at home. News accounts often give a distorted picture of events and a false sense of imminent danger to those not on the scene. Keep in touch with family and friends, and give them your sense of the local situation. Use mature judgment in deciding how to deal with any unusual event in your area. When you have questions, your host university’s study abroad coordinator is a prime source of information and support. Be sure that your parents know how to contact both your home and host institutions if they have particular questions. Are You an Ugly American? Anti-Americanism and What You Need to Know
Information compiled by Sarah Wittrock and Jason Kouba, 2006

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Ask questions & hear other’s opinions Recognize that actions speak louder than words Be aware of differences, but don’t be quick to judge Realize there is nothing “right” or “wrong” Journal your observations

As a study abroad participant you have been given an incredible opportunity to have a positive influence on the perception of Americans worldwide. Use this opportunity to not only learn and grow, but also to teach others about yourself. Just by going abroad you have taken the first step toward improving America’s image. It is now up to you to help eradicate the image of the “Ugly American.” “Most of us are not aware we have a culture until we step outside of it.” Racial Issues Abroad In addition to culture shock, students may experience greater acceptance abroad or, perhaps, encounter discrimination or even racism. While racism is not tolerated on the part of the member institutions, whether and to what extent students have such experience in their dealings with society at large will vary greatly depending upon the cultural, socioeconomic and political situation of the host country; where the host institution is located within the country; and the education level, perceptions and attitudes of the people they encounter.

In dealing with such issues, try to remember some key points. First, being aware of your own self-image and expectations is very important. In addition, it is possible that other people’s actions might reflect their curiosity about you. Therefore, keep in mind your own cultural assumptions when encountering new situations before jumping to conclusions. It is also good to remember that you do have choices in how to deal with these issues. Finally, be aware that the “culture shock” and discrimination you may experience may be different than those experienced by your fellow foreign students. As mentioned above, discrimination is not tolerated. Should any such incidents arise, please speak to the study abroad coordinator at your host institution or contact OIE’s Study Abroad Coordinator. Disability Issues Abroad Accommodations and services for students with physical or learning disabilities vary according to the laws and prevailing attitude of our international sites. Some needs require more preparation which should be addressed prior to departure. General information on travel and study abroad is also available through Mobility International USA. http://www.miusa.org Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Issues Abroad (From Barnard’s Guide to Living Abroad) It is important to be aware of the laws pertaining to homosexuality in the

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countries you are visiting as well as the general attitudes of the populace toward the lesbian and bisexual visitors and members of their community. Useful publications include “Gaia’s Guide,” “an international guide for traveling women,” which includes lesbian, feminist, and gay resources, publications, restaurants, etc.; The International Lesbian and Gay Legal Resource Guide and Attorney Directory (NEFIR [The National Educational Foundation for Individual Rights]), a comprehensive guide to lesbian, gay and bisexual legal organizations and resources with a directory of lesbian, gay and bisexual friendly legal professionals currently practicing around the world. Make it your business to familiarize yourself with your host country’s particular situation (legal, cultural, and practical) before your departure. Once abroad, contact existing appropriate organizations for lesbians, gays and bisexuals so you can begin building a support system. Useful websites:  NAFSA: Association of International Educators, Rainbow Special Interest Group www.indiana.edu/~overseas/lesbi gay/ The Global Gay Guide Network http://gayguide.net/index2.html International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) www.iglhrc.org Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Returned Peace Corps

Volunteers http://www.lgbrpcv.org/\  Damron: Gay and Lesbian Travel Guide http://www.damron.com/index.html

Culture Shock: Factors Important to Successful Intercultural Adjustments (From Worldwide Classroom: Consortium for International Education & Multicultural Studies) Open Mindedness The ability to keep one's opinions flexible and receptive to new stimuli seems to be important to intercultural adjustment. Sense of Humor A sense of humor is important because in another culture there are many things which lead one to weep, get angry, be annoyed, embarrassed, or discouraged. The ability to laugh off things will help guard against despair. Ability to Cope with Failure The ability to tolerate failure is critical because everyone fails at something overseas. Persons who go overseas are often those who have been the most successful in their home environments and have rarely experienced failure, thus, may have never developed ways of coping with failure. Communicativeness The ability and willingness to communicate one's feelings and thoughts to others, verbally or non-verbally, has been suggested as an important skill for successful intercultural communicators. Flexibility and Adaptability The ability to respond to or tolerate the ambiguity of new situations is very important to intercultural success. Keeping options

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open and judgmental behavior to a minimum describes an adaptable or flexible person. Curiosity Curiosity is the demonstrated desire to know about other people, places, ideas, etc. This skill or personality trait is important for intercultural travelers because they need to learn many things in order to adapt to their new environment. Positive and Realistic Expectations It has been shown frequently that there are strong correlations between positive expectations for an intercultural experience and successful adjustment overseas. Tolerance for Differences and Ambiguities A sympathetic understanding for beliefs or practices differing from one's own is important to successful intercultural adjustment. Positive Regard for Others The ability to express warmth, empathy, respect, and positive regard for other persons has been suggested as an important component of effective intercultural relations. A Strong Sense of Self A clear, secure feeling about oneself results in individuals who are neither weak nor overbearing in their relations with others. Persons with a strong sense of themselves stand up for what they believe but do not cling to those beliefs regardless of new information, perspectives, or understandings which they may encounter.

Re-Entry Shock (From an article by Thea Miller, a freelance writer) Some participants returning from extended international study find no one willing to relive those fascinating, cultural memories. Family and friends are waiting to greet you open arms, but not always with open eyes. Facing the unbelievable "newness" of home and the unwillingness of friends to listen leaves returning participants feeling more like strangers in their own country. According to Judith Martin, an associate professor of intercultural communication at the University of Minnesota, it is more difficult to come home. When you go abroad, she says, "you expect it to be different; when you come home, no one expects you to have changed." Some universities have begun to offer classes to help students make sense out of their experiences abroad and recognize the impact it has on them. The differences between cultures and the changes you undergo will affect you the rest of your life, your future academic work, and your career. Integrating the study-abroad experience into your life is the most important step to overcoming the culture shock. You sought international study to broaden your understanding of the world - now use it to help others achieve that understanding. If you feel a need to work through some re-entry shock, or just want to share

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your foreign experiences with others, here are a few suggestions:  Ask high school foreign language instructors if you can give short guest lectures, illustrated with photographs, slides, or videos.  Many local civic and children's organizations enjoy speakers who share their foreign travel anecdotes. Audience members often add their own stories to the conversation. Kiwanis, Rotary clubs, Girl and Boy Scout troops may be able to utilize your experiences through presentations. Talk about your experiences with others who have recently traveled abroad and who may be experiencing the same feelings you're having. They may be able to share some tips with you on how they learned to deal with their feelings.

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Solutions to re-entry shock are numerous and unique to each individual. Most important, remember that the time, energy and expense spent studying abroad was well spent

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APPENDIX I: PACKING CHECKLIST
Pack lightly. The week before departure, you should pack everything you think you’ll need, pick up all of your bags and walk around the block. If you have trouble, you have packed too much. Plan to dress more conservatively than you would at home. Clothing does make a personal statement that says different things in different cultures. The best articles of clothing to take are lightweight and washable. Pack garments that can be layered and interchanged. Avoid sports jerseys and mini skirts and shorts. Sweatshirts are okay for around the house, but not for appearing in public. Clothing Comfortable Walking Shoes/Boots Waterproof Coat with Hood Sweatshirt Shirts/Blouses Jeans/Slacks Dress/Skirt Sports Coat Sweaters Socks/Nylons Underwear Swimsuit Belt Hat Pajamas Lightweight Cover-Up or Bathrobe Health Supplies Band-Aids Medications/Personal Healthcare Items Contact Lens Solution Feminine Products Sun Screen Vitamins Antacids Thermometer Antibacterial Ointment Aspirin/Ibuprofen Anti-Diarrhea Medicine Cold Medication Condoms Sundries and Notions Small Flashlight Pocket Calculator Folding Umbrella Needle and Thread Safety Pins Journal Sunglasses Travel Alarm Clock Address Book Camera (Film/Batteries) Laundry Bag Toiletries Toothbrush/Toothpaste Pictures of Your Family and Friends Postcards of Your Hometown Bilingual Dictionary Small Inexpensive Gifts Cookbook with Conversion Chart

Linens Check Country-Specific Information Documents, Etc. Passport Extra Passport Photos Driver’s License Phone Card Insurance Information Visa/Acceptance Letters Health Records Travel’s Checks / Debit Card

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Travel Gear Sleep Sack or Sleeping Bag Towel and Washcloth A Good Travel Guide Money Belt/Neck Safe Electrical Adapter

Prescriptions For Medications, Glasses, Contacts, etc. ISIC Card Academic Records, i.e. SNAP Report Advisor’s E-Mail Address This manual!

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APPENDIX II: TRAVEL RESOURCES
Travel Books Let’s Go These books specialize in regions or specific countries by providing extensive information about everything you need to know about traveling. Available at any major book store. (http://www.letsgo.com/) Lonely Planet These books are basically set up the same as Let’s Go and provide the same information for the most part. Definitely look over both books if you are thinking about buying a travel book. (http://www.lonelyplanet.com/) The Exchange Student Survival Kit This book is available at Murphy Library. Web Sites http://www.studyabroad.com This web site is very comprehensive and informational on just about every topic included under studying abroad. http://www.railfaneurope.net/ This web site is the official web site of the European rail system. http://www.railpass.com/ This web site can give you information about Eurail passes and general train information. Train and Bus Travel www.raileurope.com www.eurolinespass.com www.busabout.com http://tripprep.com This site provides health and vaccination tips about individual countries. http://www.traveling.com Find great tips from banking to travel warnings in a variety of countries http://verber.com/mark/travel/packing. html Clueless on what to pack? This site has great suggestions of what to bring during your stay http://www.travelinginspain.com/testwe b.html Find out everywhere you need to go if you plan on traveling throughout Spain http://www.surfmexico.com/states/national/bus_lines. php Ryan Air: http://www.ryanair.com/site/EN/ Youth Hostels Hostelling International: http://www.hihostels.com/openHome.d o General Travel Information http://www.tripspot.com/europefeature. htm www.statravel.com http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/ tw/tw_1764.html This web site can give you extensive information about travel advisories for the country that you are traveling to.

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APPENDIX III: EMERGENCY CONTACTS
In the event of an emergency, you may call COLLECT Office of International Education 116 Graff Main Hall University of Wisconsin-La Crosse La Crosse, Wisconsin 54601 USA Telephone: (608) 785-8016 Fax: (608) 785-8923 studyabroad@uwlax.edu
Study Abroad Health Insurance All UW System study abroad students are required to be enrolled in a health insurance plan administered by CISI,  CISI Policy number: CISI0066;  Team Assist (AIG) ID number: GLB 9111660. The insurance plan includes Team Assist Plan (TAP) benefit with 24-hour emergency telephone assistance and medical referral service. In the U.S., call (800) 472-0906, worldwide call COLLECT (01-713) 267-2525 or e-mail customerservice3@aig.com. Healthcare Provider Name: ___________________________________ Phone Number: ___________________________________ After Hours Emergency Number: ___________________________________ U.S. Embassy in your Host Country Street Address: ___________________________________ Phone Number: ___________________________________ After Hours Emergency Number: ___________________________________

Sandy Sieber Study Abroad Coordinator Office: (608) 785-8925 Home: (608) 788-1143 sieber.sand@uwlax.edu

Jason Kouba Study Abroad Advisor Office: (608) 785-8918 Home: (817) 723-6385 kouba.jaso@uwlax.edu

Emergency Cell Phone: (608) 386-6164 This cell phone will be shared by an on-duty staff member outside of usual office hours of Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

University Police 24-hour Emergency: (608) 789-9000

Jay Lokken Director Office: (608) 785-8017 Home: (608) 784-9360 lokken.jay@uwlax.edu

911 Equivalent in Host Country ___________________________________

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